Multiplex samosa-sales pitch makes Prakash Jha cut 'Aarakshan'

May 4, 2011 Subhash K. Jha

Mumbai, May 4 (IANS) Short and crisp narrations are in vogue in Bollywood and keeping that trend in mind, Prakash Jha, whose hit film "Rajneeti" was two-hour-47-minute long, has cut "Aarakshan" to a much shorter playing-time of two-hour-15-minutes.

"Yes, I have kept the length down to the minimum. Nowadays a filmmaker can't afford to be emotional about the footage that he shoots. What had to go is gone in 'Aarakshan'. I don't make a film only for my own satisfaction. I've to keep many considerations in mind," said Jha.

He has been forced to comply by what Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra describes as the "multiplex samosa-sales pitch".

"It is the demand of the times… and of time. You can't afford to make your film longer than a certain length. It hampers the number of screenings in the multiplexes and restricts viewership as well. Though I must add that the audience will be with you for as long as you want if the story is gripping," he added.

It's learnt that some of dramatic and emotional sequences featuring the Big B with Saif Ali Khan and Deepika Padukone had to go for the sake of brevity.

Ideally, Jha would have liked "Aarakshan" to have much more playing-time. With the length cut down, the film has to sacrifice the explanatory history.

"It's a complex story. I talk about the reservation issue that goes back to Rig Veda and then right up to Jayaprakash Narayan's student movement in the 1960s. A lot of back-projection was required," he said.

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